The Developmental Roller Coaster

December 17, 2008 at 10:53 pm 8 comments

     Years ago I stopped consulting the developmental charts. For a long time, it worried us terribly that C didn’t catch up. Given his prematurity, we operated under the premise that he would catch up by age two. Two, and then three, came and went with no catch up in sight. Eventually, I’d see the little poster in the doctor’s office with the milestones and when they should be met, and I’d chuckle and know we needed a completely new developmental chart for C. It would probably look something like this:

Walking:  Oh, sometime around 20 months. But there should be no toddling around. Don’t wait for that first, tentative step followed by lots of bumps and bruises as the skill is perfected. One day, he’ll just stand up and walk, and that will be that.

Talking:  Well, in theory that should happen shortly after walking. The all-knowing developmental therapist feels sure that C can only “work” on one thing at a time, and right now that’s walking. Surely he’ll do it right after he learns to walk. Or perhaps a couple of years later.

Nodding head “yes” and shaking head “no:”  Don’t know about that one. C’s still trying to figure out how to do that. The developmental charts put that skill at around 19 months. Apparently it’s in fact sometime around 8 years old.

Reading: Oh, that’s easy. He will learn that all by himself before age 3. It won’t be obvious, because he doesn’t really talk, but before long it will become clear he can read every word he can say, and then some.

Running:  It won’t be pretty, and actually will be fairly entertaining to watch from behind, but he’ll be able to do that fairly soon after learning to walk. It may never be a normal gait, but it will get him where he needs to go.

Sequence counting:  He’ll amaze people in lines by counting by 12s and 13s long before he should be able to. He’ll also be able to say the alphabet backward faster than should be normal.

Walking down stairs properly instead of using a “step-together-step-together pattern:”  I dunno, maybe never?

     So thanks anyway, What to Expect  books and posters at the doctor’s office, but I think I’ll stick with the “C Developmental Milestone Chart.” On that chart, everything C does happens Right. On. Time.

Entry filed under: autism. Tags: , , , , , , .

C-isms, Part XI War….what is it good for?

8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. acollage  |  December 17, 2008 at 11:17 pm

    Never has the phrase “he’ll do it when he’s ready to do it,” eh? Way of life with autism, it seems. Their time is the right time for them.

  • 2. therocchronicles  |  December 18, 2008 at 5:54 am

    Totally true-everything in their own time.
    The walking!! The Roc was like that too! He did cruise for a couple days and then one day he let go and walked all the way across our family room, which is half the length of our narrow townhouse! There was never a take a step and fall down, he just walked. Things that typical kids love the Roc will FEAR and then one day he’ll decide they are okay, long after other children have been enjoying them, like the tunnel slide.

  • 3. mama mara  |  December 18, 2008 at 6:07 am

    Right on!

  • 4. FXSmom  |  December 18, 2008 at 11:45 am

    We had a game with how low Matty could go on the curve for the growth chart. He kept the same little curve but his curve was way down there in danger land. I am so blessed that our pediatrician said that as long as he had a curve and no sudden decreases he didn’t care. We all knew the boy was healthy even if he wasn’t up to standards 🙂

    Yup, I should’ve put that in there too. C has been off that growth chart (on the failure to thrive side, that is) forever and worked his way back on there at some point, but just barely. I’ve given up on him fitting any particular mold!

  • 5. BQkimmy  |  December 18, 2008 at 3:36 pm

    ya, we through out our “what to expect” book months ago. and we just keep on living never knowing what to expect.

    Perfect, absolutely perfect! I like how you worded it. And it’s true – you never do know what to expect!

  • 6. hopeauthority  |  December 19, 2008 at 7:59 am

    Love your stuff.
    Now will you lay off the “runs like Forrest Gump” barbs?! tee hee

    I don’t know – it fits just so well, it’s hard to resist! Every time I watch him run I am just reminded of those scenes in the movie. It’s so endearing, really. 🙂

  • 7. robinaltman  |  December 20, 2008 at 9:23 pm

    I love that everything C does is perfect. Because it is. Those charts don’t keep in mind the important stuff – love. 🙂 (OMG. I can’t believe I said that. I’m getting maudlin.)

    Um, what’s up with THAT? You’re all schmoopy! 😉

  • 8. Goldie  |  December 30, 2008 at 4:56 am

    oh, sage words, mom. i get so upset when I see percy with other 2.5 years old who are chatting away… even though earlier in the day i was perfectly happy. it is the comparison that wrecks me. but like you said, he is doing everything right on time… Percy time!
    plus, like c, some things he does scary good! like he taught himself how to use a mouse and play some games on the Thomas website!


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